Top 25 Under 25

If you haven’t stopped and just looked in awe at some of the great young players in this game, here is your chance. I can’t remember when there was this much elite young talent in baseball. Remarkably, there’s more to come. Here is my look at the top 25 under the age of 25. Any player who will turn 25 by the start of next season has been omitted. I left out Matt Harvey (a sure top 5) because he almost certainly won’t pitch again before his 25th birthday. It is amazing how many of these guys will be top two round players as soon as next season, while less than 25 years old. In 2015 there will be even more. These are the players that can be your team’s cornerstone for the next 5-10 years. They won’t be easy to acquire, but nothing worthwhile ever is.

Top 25 Under 25

  1. Mike Trout
  2. Bryce Harper
  3. Jose Fernandez
  4. Yasiel Puig
  5. Mike Stanton
  6. Manny Machado
  7. Chris Sale
  8. Freddie Freeman
  9. Madison Bumgarner
  10. Xander Bogaerts
  11. Jason Heyward
  12. Shelby Miller
  13. Eric Hosmer
  14. Matt Moore
  15. Jean Segura
  16. Gerrit Cole
  17. Jurickson Profar
  18. Wil Myers
  19. Christian Yelich
  20. Zack Wheeler
  21. Brett Lawrie
  22. Taijuan Walker
  23. Julio Teheran
  24. Nolan Arenado
  25. Patrick Corbin

Honourable Mentions: A.Simmons, A.Rizzo, T.Cingrani, A.Rendon, B.Miller

  • Trout’s  OBP is over .500 in the second half this year. There is no longer a Trout vs Harper debate. It’s been replaced with Trout vs Miggy.
  • I love Machado for his numbers at a weak position. The fact that he’s not #3 isn’t a reflection of him, but of the emergence of Puig and Fernandez. Machado is also a lock to stay at 3rd, or even move up the defensive spectrum.
  •  Jose Fernandez: At time of writing he’s got one start remaining and he sports a 2.25 ERA (2.64 FIP), a 45% ground ball rate and a 28% K. He’s a top 5 SP, and he’s 21.
  • Nobody will ever question Yasiel Puig’s talent. The photo above is what I found when I looked up “beast” in the dictionary. If you ignore the narrative and focus on results, you’ll find that he’s made adjustments as the year has gone, and continued to be successful. I have no reason to doubt him and I put him just above Giancarlo Stanton. No small feat indeed.
  • Madison Bumgarner is just 24 years old. He came up, like Fernandez, at 21 but won’t likely ever achieve what Jose did in 2013. A 3.10 career FIP and an increasing K rate is nothing to complain about though.
  • I can’t put Bogaerts #1, even if I own him in my 3 keeper/dynasty leagues. I’m all-in on him, predicting 20 hr while batting .290 in 2014 as a 21 year old. He’s that good! I don’t see any better SS to own in a dynasty league.
  • Shelby Miller, Matt Moore, Gerrit Cole, Zack Wheeler and Taijuan Walker round out the future aces in the under 25 group. Some of this is based on stuff, as well as some great early returns from others.
  • Since the all-star break, Eric Hosmer is hitting 332/385/496, rewarding his patient owners that held onto him. With Freeman, the future of 1B looks very bright indeed.
  • While you’re hanging on to elite prospects who have struggled, grab a hold of Profar. He’s the youngest player on this list, and hasn’t been given consistent playing time to get into any sort of rhythm in the big leagues.
  • There aren’t often opportunities to acquire top young players in dynasty leagues. This might be one of them.
  • The K’s have been there for Myers, but so has the power, slugging over .500 since his first month in the majors. I’m looking at a 25 HR guy who hits .290. If he can reduce his Ks, the sky is the limit.
  • Christian Yelich hasn’t set the world on fire in his debut, but he’s shown a nice power/speed combination with a good average. While he doesn’t have Myers’ power, he may chip in 20 SB to go with 15 HR and a .295 average. There’s room in his frame for the power to grow as he matures. There aren’t a lot of young outfielders that I’d prefer in a dynasty league.
  • Brett Lawrie has increased his stock dramatically with a 300/355/467 second half of 2014. A lot of his value comes from playing 3B (that 2B experiment was a little too dreamy), but while it seems that he’s disappointed for years, he’s just 23. Not everyone peaks at 20/21.
  • Nolan Arenado rounds out the bats. After a rough start, he’s hit over 300 since the all-star break. Not a prototypical 3B power guy, Arenado has a great bat and should continue to see the north side of .300. If he can get to 15 hrs in Coors, his counting stats should be just fine.
  • Patrick Corbin had a breakout season in 2013. His K rate went up and he boasted a 47% ground ball rate. It will be interesting to see where he falls in drafts due to his second half decline. An intriguing arm with very good control.
  • I wanted desperately to put Anthony Rendon and Andrelton Simmons on this list, but like I stated at the onset, we’re in a golden era for young talent in the majors. Enjoy it.
  • A colleague pointed out that there are 10 arms inside this top 25. The arms carry considerably more risk, yet they are simply too impressive for me to leave off. As always use caution when evaluating young starters!
Paul Hartman

Written by 

Fantasy Baseball player since 1987. Creator of Fantasy Assembly, yet just fortunate enough to be a part of it.

7 thoughts on “Top 25 Under 25”

  1. Thanks for reading Jason!
    This list will be updated next week. I don’t have the numbers in front of me, but I think he was in the 18-20 range.
    I’ll post a revised list…quite a few new names. This was done at the end of summer last year, and some key names need to be added!

    1. crap…if you’ve got draft questions feel free to ask away.
      We’ll try to answer as many questions as we can for you.

Comments are closed.